Here is my bismuth experience with the 410 today. I was so disgusted with my 410 steel loads last month when I shot at Eurasion doves, I decided to do something about it and ordered 20lbs or Rotometals #8 bismuth. The Bismuth came in right at .090 average and had 454 pellet per oz. Shot looks good for bismuth. Their website says it is smaller than #8s, but I was glad to find it is the right size. Running KPY shotshell ballistics on it gets me 291 pellets and a range of 42 yards vs 143 and 197 pellets with steel #7 & #8s with only 34 and 25 yards of range. Shown below is a chart of Lead, 2 sizes of steel, and the bismuth.
Material - Load Size - Shot Size - Pellets - Muzz Velocity - Distance - Gel Penetration
|5% Antimony Lead||300||# 7.5 (0.095)||239.48||1135||60.2||0.75|
|Bismuth||273||# 8 (0.090)||291.12||1225||41.6||0.75|
|Steel||150||# 8 (0.090)||196.33||1300||25.0||0.75|
I loaded up a 5/8oz load that runs 1225, haven't chronoed it yet, but I split the recommended data in the Lyman Manual and Hodgdon website.
Remington 3" Hull
5/8 Bismuth #8
Shot 7 shells to take 3 doves. Miss one at about 45 yards completely, but hit the other 3 and lost 1 in the thick brush. 1st dove was about 25 yards and dropped on the first shot. Second was about 35 yards, hit on the first shot, kept flying and dropped on the 2 shot at about 40 yards. 3rd and 4th shots were wiff at 45 yards. 4th dove was hit on second shot at about 40 yards went down into a thickett. The difference compared to #8 steel was significant. With 410 3" lead shells running $20+ a box, I reloaded a box of bismuth for $.65 shell (assuming free 1x fired hull) and $16.25 a box making it cheaper to reload than the price of a new box of lead shot. With the 20lbs, got enough to load 2 cases and last me for many years to come.